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Jobseekers left in the dark on applying for work amid COVID-19

Adrian Flores
Adrian Flores
04 August 2020 1 minute readShare
Job seekers left in the dark on how to make shortlists

A new survey has found that only a quarter of current jobseekers in Australia and New Zealand say they completely understand what’s required to make a job interview shortlist today.

The poll from recruitment firm Hays found that a further 33 per cent understand “to a certain extent”, while the remaining final 39 per cent admitted to having no understanding of how to gain a place on an interview shortlist.

The survey is based on a poll of 1,049 people conducted in June and July 2020.

Hays managing director for Australia and New Zealand Nick Deligiannis said COVID-19 has changed the world of work, with employers now valuing new skills and qualities.

“Clearly, a significant percentage of today’s jobseekers do not feel informed as to what they need to do to ensure their CV will earn them a place on the interview shortlist,” Mr Deligiannis said.

“To gain an interview in the current market, it takes a CV in an acceptable format that uses relevant keywords and is backed by proof, appropriate soft skills and the potential to add value longer-term.”

Six resume tips from Hays

1. Use an acceptable CV format 

Stick to the accepted structure, which allows a reader to quickly determine if you should be shortlisted.

2. Add keywords

Your CV must also include relevant keywords so that screening algorithms or an applicant tracking system identifies yours as a suitable match. It’s also advisable to mirror some of the language and keywords used in the job description to increase your chance that the reader will see you as a good fit.

3. Prove your skills

Pepper your CV with quantifiable results to show you are a tried and tested candidate with relevant technical skills. For graduates or those with little experience, quantifiable evidence of your successes gained through work experience can help you stand out.

4. Offer a complete package

Make sure your CV paints a picture of the relevance of your soft as well as technical skills by sharing examples of situations where your soft skills shone through.

5. Sell yourself in your professional summary

You should convey what you can offer an employer and summarise the key skills and experiences that would allow you to succeed in this particular role and add value to the organisation. After all, employers don’t want to know what they can do for you — they want to know what you can offer them.

6. Show you are a good, long-term investment

Make sure each entry in your employment history demonstrates how your skills have improved over time. For example, each achievement you add to each entry should be better than the last. It’s also advisable to evidence your commitment to continuous upskilling in your CV to show the reader you would be a good investment both now and into the future.

Jobseekers left in the dark on applying for work amid COVID-19
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Adrian Flores
Adrian Flores

Adrian Flores is the deputy editor of MyBusiness. Before that, he was the deputy editor for SMSF Adviser as well as features editor for ifa (Independent Financial Adviser), InvestorDaily, Risk Adviser, Fintech Business and Adviser Innovation.

You can email Adrian at [email protected].

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